Perak left with no choice but to rely on untested goalkeeper

  • Football
  • Saturday, 08 Feb 2020

Still out: Perak’s first choice goalkeeper Hafizul Hakim is still recovering from a knee surgery.

PETALING JAYA: Perak’s preparation for the M-League season has hit a snag as their second choice goalkeeper Khairul Amri Salehuddin picked up an injury during their pre-season tour in Singapore.

The 30-year-old Khairul knocked his knee and suffered a concussion after colliding with Balestier Khalsa FC’s player in a friendly match which ended 1-1 at the Toa Payoh Stadium on Thursday.

Perak’s first choice custodian Hafizul Hakim is still recovering from a knee surgery and they are now with untested youngster Nasrullah Aziz.

The Seladang coach Mehmet Durakovic is hoping that Khairul’s injuries are not severe and Hafizul will make a quick return to the team.

“Khairul clashed with Balestier’s big foreign striker and I had to take him out and bring in Nasrullah. Nasrullah did well despite his inexperience, ” said the Australian.

“Our first choice keeper Hafizul is still in rehab so we may have to rely on our third choice goalkeeper.”

“Nasrullah is just 22 years old but he has been with the team for the last two years.

“It’s rare for the third choice goalkeeper to get a chance to play so I hope Nasrullah takes this chance to prove himself.”

The match against Balestier saw the hosts taking the lead through Shuhei Hoshino in the 14th minute before Shahrel Fikri Fauzi equalised for Perak in the 89th minute for a 1-1 draw.

Durakovic hopes the playing surface in their next game against Geylang International tomorrow will be more suited to his team’s playing style.

“The pitch was bumpy but we managed to play a good game against Balestier. We created a lot of chances to score and I managed to test most of the players in the game, ” said Durakovic.

“I hope we can continue the same against Geylang, I want to test all the players and see them taking their chances to make the starting XI.”

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